TiqIQ: Ticket Prices Start at $15 On Secondary Market For Pivotal Series Against Toronto

The series of the year gets going on September 10th, as the New York Yankees and Toronto Blue Jays engage in a four-day affair that very well could decide the AL East division. Toronto stands 1.5 games ahead of the Yanks. Regardless, this four-game run could be precisely what changes everything for either team and could be the Yankees and/or Jays series to hit up for fans as the regular season winds down.

Despite this being an enormous series for both teams, Yankees tickets are actually showing tremendous value for all four games. New York Yankees tickets on the secondary market are over $129 on average to end the 2015 MLB season, yet none of these four clashes come close to even $100 on average. In fact, the most expensive game is game three on the 12th, when fans can pile into Yankee Stadium for this division rivalry for an average price of $91.25.

The value strings across this series from start to finish, too, with game one costing just $77.70 on average, while game two and the series finale (game four) both hover right around $83. Even crazier is the get-in price for each game, as the first two games have fans hitting the cheap seats for just $15, while the next two games are $17 and $18 to get in the door, respectively. If all of that value wasn’t enough, Toronto fans will be pleased to learn it’s not all about the Yanks, as Blue Jays tickets also drop way down for this series (usually right around $126 on average for the rest of the year).

This series carries even more value when you look ahead to the a late-season series between these two squads (Sep. 21-23) in Toronto. Sure, it’s entirely possible (if not downright likely) that the series two weeks from now will be more intense, but even if that’s the case, all three of those games are priced out over $205 on average. That gives fans huge savings to see the same exact series live this week, and with the ramifications just as important. Fans looking to attend either of these series can find the best travel and hotels deals via Hipmunk.com, which lists accommodations ranging from five-star hotels to AirBnB availability.

While the value is obvious for this week, the winner is not. The Blue Jays and Yankees have been fighting back and forth for the top spot in the AL East for the past month and both have really been in the mix for the division all year long. Toronto really put their foot on the gas when they swung trades for Troy Tulowitzki and David Price, however, and suddenly are quite the formidable roadblock as New York tries to win the division and punch their ticket into the 2015 MLB playoffs.

The reality is both teams boast elite offenses, and aside from Price in Toronto, neither has a defense they can routinely hang their hat on. It doesn’t get much more obvious than a look back at the meetings between these two already this year, as Toronto holds an 8-4 season series edge. The reason? Offense. Toronto lived up to their potent offense in the prior 2015 meetings, dropping a whopping 43 runs on the Yanks, while only giving up 26. If the Yankees want to give the AL East title a serious go, their offense will need to show up. There’s no guarantee that happens, but it’s beyond clear that this series is hyped up for a reason: because the offensive potential is through the roof and there just aren’t many series that carry more weight.

9/10 to 9/13 Series Preview: Toronto Blue Jays


So this is the big one. The most important series of not only the 2015 season, but the most important series for the Yankees since 2012. The Blue Jays? They haven’t played a series this big since Joe Carter faced Mitch Williams. The Yankees certainly need to win this series more than Toronto. They’re at a disadvantage going forward due to injury, general roster construction, and the standings. New York is 4-8 against the Jays this year, including 1-5 at Yankees Stadium. Gross.

What Have The Blue Jays Done Lately?

Believe it or not, the Blue Jays are actually in something of a slump right now. They just dropped two of three to the Red Sox and are 3-3 in their last six games. Of course, they’re also 26-9 since August 1st, so yeah. The Jays are 79-60 overall with baseball’s best run differential at +190. (The Cardinals are second at +122.) The Yankees are 1.5 games back in the AL East, which means they have to take at least three of four this weekend to come out of the series in first place. A split ain’t good enough at this point.

Offense & Defense

In terms of runs per game (5.47), the Blue Jays have baseball’s best offense since the 2009 Yankees (5.65). They’ve scored 760 runs this season, almost a hundred more than the second place team (Yankees at 671). This is a juggernaut offense. They have a team 114 wRC+. The gap between them and the No. 2 team (Dodgers at 107) is the same as the gap between No. 2 and No. 8 teams (several at 100). Just imagine if they had a healthy 2B Devon Travis (136 wRC+). He’s out with a shoulder problem.

Tulo. (Presswire)
Tulo. (Presswire)

Manager John Gibbons has apparently decided scoring runs is too easy, so he’s been batting OF Ben Revere (97 wRC+) leadoff instead of SS Troy Tulowitzki (99 wRC+). Tulo now hits fifth behind the Revere, 3B Josh Donaldson (162 wRC+), OF Jose Bautista (143 wRC+), and 1B Edwin Encarnacion (141 wRC+). Pretty much any one of those guys would be the best hitter on most other teams in baseball. The Blue Jays have all three in the lineup. Scary. Scary scary scary.

The rest of the Toronto lineup features C Russell Martin (106 wRC+), 2B Ryan Goins (84 wRC+), OF Kevin Pillar (83 wRC+), and the 1B Justin Smoak (103 wRC+) and 1B/OF Chris Colabello (151 wRC+) platoon. C Dioner Navarro (67 wRC+) will get some at-bats at DH, especially now that rosters have expanded and they have a third catcher. C Josh Thole (45 wRC+ in very limited time) is R.A. Dickey’s personal catcher. IF Cliff Pennington (45 wRC+) is the backup infielder. The crop of September call-ups includes UTIL Matt Hague, IF Munenori Kawasaki, OF Ezequiel Carrera, and OF Dalton Pompey. Pompey has been used as their pinch-running specialist.

The offense is mighty impressive, but the Blue Jays don’t get enough credit for being an excellent defensive club. Martin, Donaldson, Tulowitzki, and Pillar are all exception defensive players while Goins, Revere, Bautista, and Smoak are merely above-average. Encarnacion is the lone solidly below-average regular gloveman. This team can catch the ball. They’re not just a collection of meathead sluggers.

Pitching Matchups

Thursday (7pm ET): RHP Luis Severino (vs. TOR) vs. LHP David Price (vs. NYY)
The Blue Jays acquired Price for games like this, to beat the Yankees and help them win the AL East for the first time in two decades. The 30-year-old is in the middle of the best season of his career, pitching to a 2.43 ERA (2.88 FIP) in 28 starts and 196.1 innings. That includes a 2.15 ERA (2.33 FIP) in seven starts and 50.1 innings with the Blue Jays. Price’s strikeout (24.8%), walk (5.2%), and homer (0.73 HR/9) rates are all excellent, and while his grounder rate (40.5%) is below-average, it doesn’t matter because he generates so many weak pop-ups (10.9%). He has a slight reverse split (.290 vs. .268 wOBA in favor of lefties) that is atypical of the rest of his career. Price is a premium power pitcher, living in the mid-90s with a four-seamer and two-seamer, and a notch below that with his cutter. He throws some kind of fastball almost 70% of the time and he spots everything. Price pitches in and out, up and down, you name it. A mid-80s changeup has become his top secondary pitch, though he’ll still throw a few upper-70s breaking balls. The Yankees have seen Price three times this year. Once went great (eight runs in 2.1 innings), once went terribly (seven shutout innings), and once went okay (three runs in seven innings).

Friday (7pm ET): TBA vs. RHP Marco Estrada (vs. NYY)
Estrada, 32, has been found money for the Blue Jays. No one expected him to pitch this well. He owns a 3.18 ERA (4.28 FIP) in 147.1 innings spread across 23 starts and six relief appearances — Estrada started the season as the long man before moving into the rotation — despite unimpressive peripherals: 18.6 K%, 8.0 BB%, 32.2 GB%, and 1.10 HR/9. Nothing is even average there. Estrada has a tiny platoon split (.286 vs. 276 wOBA, advantage righties) thanks to his upper-70s changeup, which he’ll throw in any count to any batter. He sets the pitch up with an upper-80s four-seamer and will also mix in a few upper-70s curveballs. The Yankees have seen Estrada three times this year. They crushed him once (five runs in 4.2 innings), he dominated them once (6.1 scoreless innings), and the other game was kinda in between (two runs in six innings).

Stroman. (Presswire)
Stroman. (Presswire)

Saturday (1pm ET): TBA vs. RHP Marcus Stroman (vs. NYY)
The 24-year-old Stroman was expected to miss the entire season after tearing his ACL during a fielding drill in Spring Training, but his rehab went well, so the Blue Jays are activating him for the weekend. This will be his first start of the season. Stroman had a 3.65 ERA (2.84 FIP) in 130.2 innings across 20 starts and six relief appearances last summer, which was his first taste of the show. His strikeout rate (20.8%) was about average but he didn’t walk anyone (5.2%), kept the ball on the ground (53.8%), and gave up an unsustainably small number of homers (0.48 HR/9). He also had a tiny platoon split: .287 wOBA for lefties and .278 wOBA for righties. Stroman will throw six different pitches, but his mid-80s slider and changeup took a backseat to his low-to-mid-90s two and four-seamer, low-90s cutter, and low-80s curveball. This is his first start back following a long layoff, so who knows what to expect. With any luck, Stroman will be rusty. Rusty and overthrowing because he’s amped up in his first start back.

Sunday (1pm ET): TBA vs. RHP R.A. Dickey (vs. NYY)
The Blue Jays acquired Dickey to be their ace a few years ago and at this point it’s not even a guarantee he will be in their postseason rotation. The 40-year-old has a 4.01 ERA (4.58 FIP) in 29 starts and 188.2 innings this season, though he has been better the last few months, pitching to a 3.10 ERA (4.00 FIP) in 19 starts and 124.2 innings since June 1st. Dickey doesn’t strike hitters out (14.8%) and he doesn’t get ground balls (43.1%), which isn’t uncommon for knuckleballers. They tend to get weak fly balls. His walk rate is average (7.4%) and he’ll give up dingers (1.10 HR/9). Sometimes the knuckleball doesn’t knuckle and becomes a batting practice fastball. Again, he’s another guy with a small platoon split (.320 vs. .310 wOBA in favor of righties). Dickey throws his knucklepiece 85% of the time or so, and these days it resides in the mid-to-upper-70s. A show-me low-80s fastball is his other pitch. The Yankees have seen Dickey three times this season and managed to score three runs in 21.1 innings total. I’m looking forward to the possibility of “well the offense has struggled since facing the knuckleballer” excuses after this weekend.

The Yankees, meanwhile, have not yet announced their rotation for the weekend. Severino is starting tonight. That’s all we know. Adam Warren‘s lengthy relief out last night suggests they will keep everyone on turn, which would mean Ivan Nova on Friday, Michael Pineda on Saturday, and Masahiro Tanaka on Sunday. I know they want to give Tanaka extra rest whenever possible, but holy moly, it would be absolute madness to not start him on regular rest Sunday. Games like that are the reason they signed the guy.

Bullpen Status
The bullpen was once a weakness for Gibbons. That is no longer the case. They made some pickups at the trade deadline and called up some players to improve the relief crew. Rookie RHP Roberto Osuna (2.08 ERA/2.62 FIP) is the closer and RHP Aaron Sanchez (2.98/4.80) is now the setup man. Sanchez started the season in the rotation before moving back into a relief role. LHP Brett Cecil (3.00/3.03) is the primary southpaw.

Deadline additions RHP Mark Lowe (1.74/2.12) and RHP LaTroy Hawkins (2.86/3.09) have improved the middle innings situation. RHP Bo Schultz (3.27/4.84) and RHP Liam Hendriks (2.64/2.11) have also done solid work. RHP Steve Delabar, LHP Jeff Francis, LHP Aaron Loup, and RHP Ryan Tepera are the extra September arms. Loup, Delabar, Francis, Hendriks, Francis, and Schultz all pitched yesterday. The late-inning guys are rested.

Check out our Bullpen Workload page for the status of Joe Girardi‘s key relievers. Andrew Stoeten’s site is the place to go for the latest on the Blue Jays, though you are forewarned, the language is not family friendly.

Yankeemetrics: Baltimore chopped (Sept. 7-9)

A-Rod's historic 30th homer (mlb.com)
A-Rod‘s historic 30th homer (mlb.com)

Comeback kids
The Yankees earned their 37th comeback win of the season on Monday afternoon against the Orioles, thanks to the heroics of the two youngest guys in the lineup (John Ryan Murphy and Greg Bird) plus some help from the oldest guy in the lineup (Alex Rodriguez).

A-Rod sliced the O’s lead to 4-3 in the fifth inning with a solo homer before Murphy’s two-run shot later in the inning gave the Yankees a 5-4 lead. Murphy finished the game 2 for 4, raising his batting average against the Orioles this season to .529 (9 for 17), the second-highest by any player (min. 15 at-bats).

After Manny Machado evened the game at 5-5 in the seventh inning, Bird responded in the bottom of the frame with a tie-breaking three-run blast that ended up as the game-winner. Before Bird, the last Yankee first baseman with a go-ahead homer in the seventh inning or later against the Orioles at Yankee Stadium was Don Mattingly on Aug. 31, 1993.

Dellin Betances is no stranger to doing amazing things on the mound, but his 27-pitch performance was more weird than spectacular. He faced six batters in the eighth inning, walking three and striking out three without giving up a run. Betances is the only Yankee reliever in the Divisional Era (since 1969) to put together an inning with at least three strikeouts, three walks and no runs allowed.

Wasted gem
There are ugly wins and there are ugly losses … and Tuesday’s game definitely qualifies as the latter. Masahiro Tanaka delivered one of his best performances of the season, but the Yankees managed just six hits (five singles) and went 0-for-3 with runners in scoring position, resulting in a rare loss for the Yankees in a game where their starter was so brilliant.

This is the first time the Yankees lost a game in which their starting pitcher went at least eight innings, allowed no more than one run and struck out at least 10 batters since Aug. 24, 1990. Tim Leary was the unlucky guy in that l-0 loss to the Brewers more than 25 years ago.

The offense was brutal aside from the bat of Alex Rodriguez, who reached yet another milestone when he sent a 98 mph fastball over the fences in the sixth inning to tie the game at 1-1. That pitch was the fastest one he’s ever homered against since Pitch F/X tracking began in 2008.

It was also his 30th homer of the season and the 15th time in his career he’s reached that mark, tying Hank Aaron for the most 30-homer seasons in MLB history. And, at the age of 40 years and 43 days, he became the second-oldest player to hit his 30th homer of the season. Only Darrell Evans (40 years and 115 days) was older than A-Rod at the time he hit No. 30 in 1987.

Boo birds
The Yankees certainly gave their fans plenty to boo about on Wednesday night, dropping the rubber game of this series against the sub-.500 Orioles thanks to some sloppy defense and yet another listless performance by the offense.

Carlos Beltran was the only Yankee who could solve the Orioles’ enigmatic starter Ubaldo Jimenez. Beltran was 2 for 3 against Jimenez, driving in all three of the Yankees runs; Jimenez held the rest of the Yankees lineup to just two hits in his seven innings of work. Beltran is now 9 for 23 (.391) against Jimenez, the highest batting average by any player that has faced him at least 25 times.

Beltran’s solo homer in the bottom of the first inning — his 15th of the season — tied the game at 1-1 in the bottom of the first inning. That blast gave him 10 career seasons with at least 15 home runs and 30 doubles, matching Chipper Jones for the most such seasons all-time among switch hitters.

Thoughts prior to the four-game series with the Blue Jays


The Yankees and Blue Jays start an ultra-important four-game series at Yankee Stadium tonight, assuming the weather cooperates. It rained late last night and it’s supposed to rain the rest of the day. I imagine they’d play a doubleheader this weekend should tonight’s game get postponed. Hopefully it doesn’t. Anyway, I have some thoughts not necessarily related to the Blue Jays series.

1. Workload limits are a hot topic right now because of the Matt Harvey fiasco. We all know innings are too simplistic, right? Not all innings are created equal. Grinding through a 30-pitch inning full of base-runners is not the same as tossing ten pitches in a 1-2-3 frame even though they both go into the record book as one inning pitched. I’d like to see more data-driven workload management. Has the pitcher’s release point changed or become inconsistent? How many high-stress sliders are being thrown? Are more pitches being left up in the zone? Is the pitcher suddenly taking more time between pitches? Pitching in general leads to injuries, especially pitching while fatigued. There are so many better ways to potentially measure fatigue and monitor workloads than simply counting total innings or pitches. Teams are always well ahead of the public with stuff like this. I have to think there is data-driven workload management going around around the league. There’s too much information available for it not to happen.

2. I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t a little concerned about Dellin Betances‘ late-season workload. Not panicking, but a bit concerned. He’s thrown 71.2 innings and made 63 appearances through 138 games this year. Through 138 games last year it was 81 innings and 61 appearances, so the raw numbers are not significantly different. The issue is a) he now has all of last year’s innings on his arm too, and b) his innings this year have been much more stressful. Dellin’s average Leverage Index when entering a game last year was 1.36, which is firmly in medium leverage territory. This year he’s at 1.72 LI when entering the game. That’s astronomical. Ninth highest among 139 qualified relievers. So he’s throwing more intense innings this year. At this point the Yankees can not hold Dellin back though. They need Betances to help nail down wins. But the fact he’s now put 16 of the last 36 batters he’s faced on base (.444 OBP) is a red flag. He doesn’t look quite as sharp as he did even earlier this season. Hopefully it’s just a little slump and not workload related. (Yes, I know he has a long history of being wild. Isn’t it a red flag that he’s turned back into that guy of late?)

3. How great has John Ryan Murphy been? He doesn’t play a whole lot, and when he does he usually has the platoon advantage, but a .282/.326/.427 (105 wRC+) line from the backup catcher? That’s phenomenal. Murphy’s been even better of late, hitting .325/.367/.494 (137 wRC+) with five doubles and three homers over the last three calendar months. He seems to work very well with the pitchers — Joe Girardi praised him for getting Michael Pineda through six innings following his ugly second inning on Monday — and handle the defensive part of the game well. The young call-ups like Luis Severino and Greg Bird are getting all the headlines right now and deservedly so, they’ve been pushed into regular roles and are handling them well, but Murphy’s done very well himself as a part-timer player. He’s somehow managed to become the ultra-rare impressive young Yankees player who gets zero hype. Murphy would be the talked about as baseball’s next great young catcher if he played for the Cardinals or Red Sox.


4. The Yankees aren’t getting enough credit for rebuilding on the fly. Retooling, as they say. They didn’t go to the postseason the last two years but they weren’t awful either — 84 and 85 wins do not constitute disaster seasons, just disappointing ones. The Yankees are back in the race this year and while their veteran players are a major reason why, they’ve dipped into the farm system for help whenever a need arose. It’s not just Bird and Severino, or even Murphy. Slade Heathcott and Mason Williams helped in limited duty. So did Ramon Flores. Chase Whitley made some spot starts. An flock of young relievers have been shepherded back and forth between Scranton and New York. That’s all while other prospects like Aaron Judge, Gary Sanchez, and Brady Lail reached Triple-A. Eric Jagielo would have as well if not for the fluke knee injury he suffered sliding into home plate back in June. There’s something to be said for not being unwatchably awful. Not every rebuild has to be a total tear down. It’s possible to rebuild and retool while remaining at least somewhat competitive and keeping fans interested, especially when you’re a large market team. The Yankees have done it the last few seasons and don’t get enough credit for it.

5. Boy, there is just no fight in the Nationals, huh? As soon as things started to go wrong against the Mets this week, they let it spiral out of control. They’re easily the most disappointing team in baseball this year — one of the most disappointing in the last 15 years, right? — and manager Matt Williams is probably going to take the fall after the season, but it’s not all on him. Bryce Harper’s the only dude on the roster who deserves zero blame. He’s been a monster and has kept them relevant almost single-handedly this summer. Anyway, I bring this up because the Nationals seem to be the antithesis of the Yankees. The whole Fighting Spirit thing is a fun little joke but there is definitely a lot of truth behind it. The Yankees never let things spiral out of control like the Nats and they constantly prove doubters wrong. (No, losing two games to the O’s does not mean the Yankees never put up a fight.) People have been predicting the collapse of the Yankees for a decade now, and their worst team during that time won 84 games while dealing with a zillion injuries. The front office puts a lot of stock in character and makeup and I think this is the result. They suffer a tough loss or drop a few games in a row, but they bounce right back. The Yankees as a team are mentally tough year after year and it’s not an accident. It’s by design. I’ve really come to appreciate that in recent years.

Defensive miscues doom the Yankees in a 5-3 loss to Orioles

This series, not only the game, could have gone much better for the Yankees but it didn’t turn out that way. New York dropped the series finale against Baltimore tonight for a brutal series loss at home. CC Sabathia looked good for most of the game but errors doomed his night while the lineup – besides Carlos Beltran – couldn’t punch the runs in. New York dropped the battle of the late innings 5-3 with offense coming up empty-handed against Ubaldo Jimenez, Darren O’Day and Zach Britton. The bullpen allowed a couple runs that spelled doom.

(Source: Getty)

Death by defense, the CC Sabathia story

CC didn’t benefit from the defense in the first. With Nolan Reimold on at first, Sabathia induced a grounder to second from Gerardo Parra that should have been an easy double play. But Stephen Drew misplayed the bounce and only had time to throw the runner out at first. Later in inning, with two outs, Chris Davis drove Reimold in with a bloop single to right that Beltran also misread. 1-0 Orioles. Definitely not types of plays you want to see from a team trying for a division title.

From second to fourth innings though, Sabathia looked very good. Remember, he was doing decently before knee injury shelved him in late August. (3.80 ERA in 4 starts in August) In those three innings, Sabathia allowed only three baserunners and struck out three. He’s definitely not the guy he used to be but that will do.

In the fifth, Sabathia got himself into a jam. Dariel Alvarez reached with a walk and Reimold followed it up with a single. After Parra moved both runners up with a sac bunt, Sabathia got a huge strikeout against Manny Machado. I thought, at that point, things would go swimmingly for New York for rest of the game. Unfortunately for CC he drilled Chris Davis to load the bases, which prompted Joe Girardi to bring in Adam Warren to close out the fifth. Sabathia wasn’t happy about it but with pitch count at 85 and a righty hitter (Jonathan Schoop) coming up, Joe didn’t want to take too many chances.

Warren did his job against Schoop – he induced a grounder to Chase Headley that should have ended the inning but his throw tumbled mid-air like changeup and went through Drew’s legs. However, that doesn’t excuse Drew of his error either – it looked definitely catchable for any ML infielder. Baltimore scored two on that miscue and made it a 3-3 tie game.

September Beltran, the step before October Beltran

Beltran made up for misreading the fly ball by hitting an oppo-dinger off of Ubaldo Jimenez. He squared up a fastball on the outer edge of the strik ezone and quite frankly, I was surprised that it carried so much. Old man’s still got it.

One-man army. (Source: Getty)

Beltran drove in two more runs in the third. With two outs and two runners in scoring position, Beltran drilled a slider inside to make it 3-1 Yanks. Three RBI for the old man and they turned out to be the only runs for the Yanks tonight.

To remind you how good he’s been – since May 1, Beltran has hit for a .878 OPS (prior to the game). After tonight’s game, he has a 123 wRC+ with an isolated power just below .200 (.199 to be precise) for the whole season. That contract isn’t looking too grim anymore!

Faltering in late innings, again

Warren held on his own pretty well in the sixth and seventh innings. Meanwhile, the Yankee offense came up with almost zilch against Ubaldo Jimenez. Dustin Ackley did hit an oppo-double in the seventh for his first Yankee hit but New York came up empty-handed. In top of eighth, with one out and 2-2 count against Steven Pearce, Warren hung a curve right up the zone. Pearce did not miss any of it and sent the ball to the visitor’s bullpen to give Baltimore a 4-3 lead.

Yankee offense went three-up, three-down against Darren O’Day in the bottom eighth. New York allowed another run in the ninth with Chris Davis’s RBI ground-rule double with two runners on. 5-3 Orioles. In the bottom ninth, Beltran, Brian McCann and A-Rod got completely handcuffed by Zach Britton to finalize a loss – a swift end to a disappointing night.

Box score, standings, highlights and WPA

Here’s tonight’s box score, updated standings, video highlights and WPA.

Source: FanGraphs

Yankees will have the Blue Jays on a four-game series at home. Needless to say… very, very crucial, right? Youngster Luis Severino will take the hill against David Price. Now that’s a matchup.

DotF: Staten Island walks off with Game One win

Got some notes to pass along:

  • OF Tyler Austin has been outrighted to Double-A Trenton, the Yankees announced. He was designated for assignment last week to clear 40-man roster space for September call-ups and apparently no team felt he was worth a waiver claim. I believe Austin can become a minor league free agent after the season.
  • C Gary Sanchez was activated off the Triple-A DL, according to Chad Jennings. He missed a little more than a week with a minor hamstring injury. They got him back just in time for the postseason. I wonder if Sanchez will get called up when the Triple-A season is over.
  • IF Ali Castillo was named the Triple-A International League Offensive Player of the Week, so congrats to him. He was bumped up from Double-A Trenton and took over as the second baseman after 2B Rob Refsnyder was called up on September 1st.
  • LHP Justin Kamplain, RHP Kolton Mahoney, and RHP Jonathan Padilla were named the Pitchers of the Week for the Low-A South Atlantic League, Short Season NY-Penn League, and Rookie Appalachian League, respectively. Congrats to all of them.
  • No Yankees farmhands were named to Baseball America’s end-of-season All-Star Team. Neither the first nor second team. That’s not surprising. There were no knock your socks off seasons in the system this year. Just a lot of good ones.
  • And finally, SS Jorge Mateo was the third overall pick in the Dominican Winter League draft today, reports Ben Badler. Mateo’s winter ball rights now belong to whichever team selected him. He’s still Yankees property. Doesn’t change anything there.

Triple-A Scranton (7-3 loss to Indianapolis) they trail the best-of-five series one game to none

  • CF Slade Heathcott: 2-5, 1 R, 1 2B — threw a runner out at third … he’s been on fire for a few weeks now
  • 2B Ali Castillo: 2-4, 2 RBI
  • LF Ben Gamel: 0-4, 2 K
  • DH Gary Sanchez: 2-3, 1 R, 1 BB — the hamstring is healthy enough to hit but not catch, I guess
  • 1B Kyle Roller: 0-3, 2 K — 1B Rob Segedin pinch-hit for him late and struck out
  • RF Aaron Judge: 1-3, 1 RBI, 1 BB, 1 K
  • 3B Cole Figueroa: 1-4 — he hit .292/.355/.359 (108 wRC+) in the regular season, you know
  • SS Gregorio Petit: 1-4
  • C Kyle Higashioka: 2-3, 1 R, 1 K — OF Jake Cave pinch-hit late and grounded out
  • RHP Kyle Haynes: 1 IP, 5 H, 6 R, 6 ER, 2 BB, 1 K, 2/0 GB/FB — 22 of 41 pitches were strikes (54%) … well that’s no way to start Game One of the postseason
  • RHP Conor Mullee: 4 IP, 3 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 0 BB, 3 K, 3/3 GB/FB — 28 of 42 pitches were strikes (67%) … great long relief by the guy who’s had three Tommy John surgeries
  • RHP Chris Martin: 1 IP, 0 H, 0 R, 0 ER, 1 BB, 1 K, 2/0 GB/FB — nine of 15 pitches were strikes (60%)
  • RHP Andury Acevedo: 2 IP, 3 H, 1 R, 1 ER, 1 BB, 2 K, 2/1 GB/FB — 22 of 38 pitches were strikes (79%)

[Read more…]

Game 138: Sabathia Returns


When we last saw CC Sabathia, he pulled himself from a start due to ongoing trouble with his right knee. At one point it appeared he would not pitch again this season. Joe Girardi admitted that was a possibility. Instead, Sabathia is back on the mound tonight with a new knee brace after spending the minimum 15 days on the DL.

The Yankees have a firm hold on the top wildcard spot, but catching he Blue Jays for the top spot in the AL East will not be easy, even with all those head-to-head games remaining. They need Sabathia to pitch well and pitch often. Soak up some innings each time out. They need as many as they can get these days. Here is the O’s lineup and here is the Yanks’ lineup:

  1. CF Jacoby Ellsbury
  2. 3B Chase Headley
  3. RF Carlos Beltran
  4. C Brian McCann
  5. DH Alex Rodriguez
  6. 1B Greg Bird
  7. LF Dustin Ackley (!)
  8. SS Didi Gregorius
  9. 2B Stephen Drew
    LHP CC Sabathia

It is cloudy and humid in New York, and there is rain in the forecast tonight. It’s not supposed to start until 10pm ET or so, but it’ll then continue through the night. That could be a problem. Hopefully they get the game in before the sky opens up. First pitch is scheduled for 7:05pm ET and you can watch on YES. Enjoy.

Injury Update: Brett Gardner (elbow) is feeling “much better” but has not yet played catch. He is available off the bench and is expected to play tomorrow … Sabathia (knee) has been activated off the DL, obviously. Rosters are expanded, so no other move was required.